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Citadel News Service
3 Dec 2008

Engineering students make donation to support teaching

The Citadel Student Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) donated $10,000 to the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department to purchase equipment that will help instructors improve how they teach. 

Photo
Greg Shoemaker, ASCE student chapter president and South Carolina Corps of Cadets regimental commander, and Col. Ken Brannan, head of the civil and electrical engineering department, with one of the clickers students helped purchase.

The money was used to purchase student response pads, commonly known as “clickers.” Students enter answers to yes/no, multiple choice, or numerical questions on the devices and the entries are tallied by a classroom computer. The professor can then instantly analyze the results to evaluate student knowledge. The devices can record responses that are anonymous or assigned to a student, allowing for integration into the students course grade.

“Clickers are a great opportunity for formative assessment of student learning in the classroom. By touching students at the point of learning, we can get instant feedback if students understand the presented concepts. If not, we can adapt our teaching methods to help the students gain understanding” said Assistant Professor Kevin Bower, the former faculty advisor to the student ASCE chapter.

The “clickers” have already been incorporated into courses by over half the department faculty this semester. The donation has also instilled a sense of pride within the students.

“This donation shows that the students are focusing on their education and the education of future students in the program, which exemplifies the leadership and values instilled by The Citadel,” said Assistant Professor Ed Hajduk, chapter faculty advisor.

The chapter raised the money through their professional activities held annually in the fall. Working in concert with The Citadel Career Center, the activities bring engineering companies and Citadel students together. Companies that donate $100 to the chapter receive a resume book of Citadel civil engineering majors from knobs to seniors. For a donation of $500, a company receives the resume book and a presentation table to meet students during event. Rooms are made available the next day for companies to interview students for future employment opportunities.

“We recognize that our professors care deeply about our education here at The Citadel,” said Cadet Col. Greg Shoemaker, president of the student chapter. “The chapter is proud that we can provide tools to assist them in our education and the education of future students within the program.”

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